CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The Chesterfield community is still reeling after the unexpected passing of 41-year-old firefighter Alicia Monahan.

Monahan died Saturday, June 25, while conducting a safety course for students in North Carolina at the Nantahala River. The cause of her death is still unknown.

8News was able to speak with two people who knew Alicia beyond her work, in her roles as a mother and community leader.

One of Alicia’s son’s teachers, Heather Andre remembered her as an involved mother, always happy seeing her children flourish and grow.

“Alicia was always thrilled to have her boys involved in singing and dancing,” Andre said.

Andre teaches Alicia’s son’s chorus class, and Justin Noel told 8News he was one of her close friends. Some of their most vivid memories of Alicia stem from her involvement in the choral department at Cosby High School.

“This spring we had a huge party for all of the kids and she volunteered to set up karaoke and it was serious. I just remember her huge smile setting it up for the kids and making sure they had that facility in which to perform,” Andre said.

Noel says he saw how Alicia’s career as a firefighter impacted the way she lived – always serving others.

“Alicia called me to say ‘hey it would be really great if I could bring my engine to help with our strike force team’ which is our stage crew,” Noel said. “It just showed Alicia spends a lot of her time caring about others and trying to connect the dots to bring people together.”

The two say they spoke up because people need to know how special Alicia was.

“One of the things she said was we don’t always get to know their whole story. I think everyone deserves to know how beautiful and strong she was,” Andre said.

Chesterfield’s fire chief will hold a news conference Wednesday, June 28 at 11 a.m. to discuss additional details on the incident that claimed Alicia Monahan’s life – a life that by all accounts was dedicated to service.